Running away naked, in a street after a napalm attack on the village Trang Bang, the photograph of the 9 year old girl haunted every sensitive heart for many decades. “It is burning-it is burning” she was crying as her back was scalding. It happened on June 8 1972 in South Vietnam as some children and South Vietnamese soldiers were running away from the invading North Vietnam troops.

Next morning, President Richard Nixon in conversation with Chief of Staff H R Haldeman remarked “I am wondering if it was fixed!” The honest thing about the American’s is that they wear their sadism on their sleeves. The media had splashed the photograph of the little girl on the front pages of the newspapers. Through his remark he disarmed an angry media. So he killed two birds with one stone. He retained his poise and without creasing his forehead he said “I don’t care!”

Very recently in 2015 we watched with horror the heart breaking picture of a refugee baby on the Turkish beach at Ali Hoca Point. A small boy wearing red T-shirt and long shorts! His shirt hiked above his waist exposing his midriff. Black sneakers, no socks, face down he was dead on the rocky beach.

The refugees were running away from the conflict zone held by ISIS. They were headed for the Greek island Kos. The boat carrying the ill- fated refugees capsized and many were drowned. And when the bodies were deposited on the beach by the surf, among others this kid was also thrown on our faces by the sea. He was identified as Aylan Kurdi aged 3 years, by the Turkish authorities.

This tragedy and many more which followed this didn’t scare the warring factions into a cease fire. They continued with the conflict with more vigour because some were angry while the others were happy. The Muslims wear their sadism on other parts as also on their sleeves. That explains the reason for Saudi Arabia to put together a rag tag militia supplied by 39 Islamic nations to add punch to the war in Yemen and other places. Rahil Sharif has taken command of Islamic militia to push Iran into one more conflict when the Iran-Iraq – Syria pipeline matures.

In our own country, in Gujarat in the year2002 one photograph shattered the sleep of humanity when the photograph of Qutubuddin Ansari was splashed on newspapers globally. His blood shot eyes glazed with fear, folded hands an expression of complete surrender-mouth agape! It became the defining image of Gujarat riots. Fear caught in a hopeless situation!

I know of fear from a very close range. Very early one morning in Feb, 1990, I and my son caught a Jammu going bus from Baramulla to visit my aged father in Srinagar. At Lal-Chowk we caught a minibus to reach our home. At the spot of Mamta Hotel after crossing the Dal Gate, we were caught in a cross fire. We scrambled for cover, ran helter- skelter till we found ourselves on a boat which took us home. But the one that really shook me up, was when we were ambushed. It was a Friday and I, attached as an honorary magistrate with the BSF party, was put on duty in the vicinity of a mosque. This mosque is situated at a highland, and if I remember it correctly the area was called Bag-E-Islam. The filtration plant which supplies drinking water to the town has been built on the very top of this hillock. The day wore off peacefully. As the dusk started closing in we decided to call it a day. So we packed up and started our return journey. As our jeep reached a blind curve, militants fired and a stone was also thrown. The Inspector fired in air not knowing where from the attack was mounted. The party came to a grinding halt. I was the only unarmed person and as such tried to find something to take shelter. But there was something missing. I soon realised that all the shops were shut and the road too was deserted. So there was no place to secure myself. The van carrying the soldiers came handy. The fire had come from the river side and that is why the encounter was brief because they were holding the lower ground. After ensuring that all was well we crossed the bridge.

In situations of extreme fear the brain shuts down. It resorts to rummaging through the pages of animal instincts of survival. Every move becomes a reflexive action. The photo in question tells us that it is neither fake nor refined. It is raw as raw as it happens. Mouth mumbling not knowing the meaning of the words! Perhaps the growl of the animal to scare away the attacking animal!

This photo, I am sure must have saved many lives as the shame became public. But it became a nightmare for the tailor Qutubuddin. He ran away to Malegaon and got a job. Soon some journalist spotted him and he lost his job. After next few years, Ansari lost half a dozen jobs as people recognised him and journos relentlessly pursued him. Political parties used his picture to woo the Muslim voters. One group of Muslims carried out terrorist attacks in his name to avenge the riots. Muslim organisations put up advertisements to attract financial assistance.

While officially classified as a communal riot, many scholars described it as ethnic cleansing. Some commentators alleged that the attacks were planned. That the train burning was stage-managed! Martha Nussbaum has said, “There is now a broad consensus that the Gujarat violence was a form of ethnic cleansing, that in many ways it was pre-meditated and that it was carried out with the complicity of the state and the law.” Modi’s first reaction was it was a terrorist attack and not communal violence. 28th Feb violence starts. 1st March Army is deployed. The mischievous elements later accused the CM of waiting 3 days little realising that on 28th Feb the month died!

The tragic part of the events were over-amplified as we were in the age of 24/7 televised news era. The videos were displayed globally. India and the Hindus were shamed. The more loyal than the king variety orchestrated a propaganda blitzkrieg unprecedented in the history of the world.

Those who watch action in the movies and enjoy the same think that they can expertly evaluate conflict situations. The Editors Guild of India in its report on media ethics and coverage on the incidents stated that the news coverage was exemplary with only a few minor lapses. Local newspapers were criticised. Gujarat Today was praised (while all hell broke loose for months on TV channels) for showing restraint.

In 1990, when Editors Guild of India thought that Kashmir was slipping away they praised the absolute silence of the media while the ethnic cleansing and pogroms were conducted against the Kashmiri Pandits. This situation continued on at an unprecedented scale for almost one year.

The two episodes relating to kids were forgotten and the world moved on. Dr K (K stands for Killer) benefited from the Vietnam War. He moved on to the next Cambodian Assignment and then on to Afghanistan. The two incidents had zero political fallout. But the Indian incident was converted into a moving feast by the Hindus and Muslims for contradictory reasons. The echo of this riot still rings alarm bells in the minds of ordinary people.

The Hindus of the Indian elite in difficult times collectively wail as widowed and aged hags. They sulk and sermonise. Their sadism is of a different variety as we shall move to the next stage.

II

…….The secret of survival is encrypted in a dew drop; a drop of water-a drop of tear. Pain is the only surplus we humans create. The rest is all false and transient! The concluding lines of chapter 1 part 1.

The irreligious criticism of the Indian State starts with the thesis: If the Indian State denies to a Muslim woman what it offers to a Hindu lady then the state discriminates between the two on the basis of religion. Therefore it is not a secular state. It is clearly a communal state. If the state refuses to admit it then it is a confused State. And if still refuses to visit its premises once again then it is a State under siege from within and from without! If the constitutional experts tell you stories to disprove my statement, they may even tell you that science and theology are the two faces of the same coin consult Galileo or Copernicus. They will tell you the truth that the earth revolves around the Sun!

 The Ghyan Peeth Awardees, the runner up candidates and the prospective aspirants should know that the Ghyan (knowledge) does not reside in the volume of words. It shapes as an idea and once accurately expressed as a word, a phrase or a sentence and blown into the ear of a comatose person shakes him/her up, root and branch and if it breaks his/her sleep; then the truthfulness of the idea gets verified.

The political parallax suffered by the Indian State ab initio, has resulted in great sufferings of the Hindus who were trapped in Pakistan after the partition. The disconnect between its thinking and being made it to take wrong decisions, if they concerned dealing with Pakistan and next Bangla Desh. For the last 70 years the pogroms against the Hindus continue but the Indian elite never recognised the crimes against the Hindus by the Muslims which were abetted by Pakistan and Bangladesh. Their sadism can partly be traced to the faulty theoretical basis of the Indian State.

 The very basis that Pakistan is not an enemy and needs to be kept in good humour was proved to be a mirage. So the cardinal reference point or line which was drawn to remove parallaxes was like line drawn on a sea beach. That is why every small communal incident was blown out of proportions by the elite Hindus in India rued J B Kriplani in 1950. But every crime against humanity was supressed by Pakistan and abetted by India.

The most shocking is what happened in Bangla Desh after two thousand Indian soldiers laid down their lives to place Sheikh Mujib on the thrown, who ultimately betrayed the Hindus who were targeted relentlessly after his assassination.

I have studied so many reports about the genocide of the Hindus in Pakistan and Bangla Desh that I am simply overwhelmed. I have a feeling as if I am wading through a field full of corpses. The Muslims in Pakistan became more ruthless and the Hindus in India more passive. The changes in circumstances do not repair the faults of character and personality. It is proved beyond doubt now. While the Muslims killed, the Hindus eclipsed the news in India. The media was posted with the task of insulating Nehru from embarrassment. The elite Hindus served as gate keepers who filtered the news, blocked the news about the purge of the Hindus in Pakistan. This in turn encouraged the killers because they could grab the properties of the hapless Hindus easily.

On Dec 15 ’97 the Hindustan Times published a letter from Bangla Desh Minorities Solidarity Forum about the atrocities directed against them by the Muslims. I drafted a letter to V N Narayanan- Editor on Dec ’19 which was published by the HT on 27th Dec. The contents of the letter are as follows:

Sir, if by placing their tale of woes before us, the protagonists of the Bangla Desh Minorities Solidarity Forum expect to evoke in us sympathy for the hapless minorities of Bangla Desh, they are barking up the wrong tree. In our country the conscience keepers, the intellectuals belonging to the neutral pool, the communist enthusiasts and the dangerous egoists never felt qualms of conscience to highlight the plight of the Hindus, who got trapped on the wrong side of the border after the partition, simply because there was nothing unhistorical about it. Some Muslim invaders, who took the fancy about making India their home, felt the need to execute pogroms against the Hindus periodically because of political and not personal considerations. Since familiarity breeds acceptability, our leaders as well as the intellectuals could not help becoming insensitive towards the sufferings of the minorities in Pakistan and again in Bangla Desh.

The pathological indifference exhibited by our society towards this human tragedy can be traced to the presumptuousness of those leaders who while demolishing the British rule in India, simultaneously demolished the logical bearings of a whole generation of intellectuals by imposing their fads on them. In the process they made them appendages of those theoretical parameters which have their roots only in the realm of idealism. Delusion of grandeur made our leaders insensitive towards the pressing human problems to which they were willy-nilly a party. But more responsible is the crop of intellectuals who weaved around fact and fiction, a cocktail social philosophy to over awe a simple, innocent and poor population. The present state of the political degeneration and social disintegration is the direct result of enhanced quantum of social foolishness fostered by that contrived philosophy. See how they started with replacing the Manu’s social code but ended up establishing the same on permanent basis!

Whether we accepted the Two Nation Theory (TNT) or not is beside the point. The point is: did the acceptance of TNT empower Pakistan legally and morally to wipe out the Hindu minority from her land? And again did the rejection of TNT (only God knows what that means) disqualify India from overlooking the welfare and honourable survival of her own forsaken population? Should the present generation also look the other side, when facts negate their inherited convictions? Or should they also draw satisfaction from Mark Twain’s slogan: we have three unspeakably precious things- freedom of speech, freedom of conscience and the prudence never to practice either of them?

 III

Every appeaser works on the theory that the crocodile will eat him last, after the croc has swallowed every munchable ligament! Nehru surrendered the initiative before Pakistan from the very beginning. While J B Kriplani and others cried hoarse he looked the other side. The Nehru-Liaqat agreement was an eye wash for the Hindus. As late as 1960, when the Indus Water talks were going on the final draft was a complete surrender. The IWT was signed in Sep 1960. Under any sound application of the International Law (Helsinki Rules) on this subject India was entitled to a share of 42.8% of water of the Indus Basin. That is what the experts say! India obtained 20% to 25 % share.

To add insult to injury, I am told that India agreed to provide a grant of62 million pounds for reasons which defy logic. Later on in a presentation before the Congress meeting in Orissa Krishna Menon said, “The concessions granted by India to Pakistan in IWT failed to restrain Pakistan from launching attacks on minorities, read Hindus-for the word Hindu was removed from the lexicon of political India.” He was referring to the horrendous carnage of the Hindus which were carried out in East Pakistan in 1964.

Next Pakistan returned the favour in August 1965 when Operation Gibraltar was put into motion!

The faults in the Hindu character were in full display when Indira Gandhi agreed to release POW’s who had surrendered after she presided over separation of Siamese twins. It never occurred to anybody in the Indian establishment that they should retain some bargaining chips till it was confirmed that Pakistan had released all Indian POW’s. Afterwards it was found that 54 soldiers, officers and pilots were held by Pakistan as was confirmed by Benazir Bhutto in 1989 before visiting Indian officials. When the Hindus lose they start the practice of self-introspection which ultimately leads to self-crucification. But the victory mysteriously becomes a heavy burden for them and they try to get rid of the burden as early as possible.

If we had hardly intelligent officials handling negotiations in presence of pathological liars who dishonoured every promise every assurance since the partition in ‘72, what merit can we assume did the people have, who claim to have gained freedom from the British in ’47?

When Babar carried out psychological evaluation of the local elite he concluded: They lack intelligence! This I think is a timeless observation. You can confirm what I am telling you by visiting Chapter 9- One Mind Many responses- you will get a feel of the level of intelligence of the best we have now. If the best minds of India can’t draft an appeal in 2017 how could we expect Indian diplomats, who were as blind as young kitten are in ’72 draft something substantial at Shimla?

While Pakistan had fine-tuned their layered negotiating stages, India I think had not done its homework properly. For us it was all the more simple: Give us Haji Peer and take back the territory. This would have caused a stalemate. Bhutto should have returned empty handed. This could have provided us with the time to get the feel of what Pakistan wanted? Next we could draw the bottom-line. OK, we demand exchange of areas at the ceasefire line to plug the routes of infiltration! That could be the bottom line! India had so much advantage that anything was possible. 195 officers of Pak Army were going to be tried for war crimes in Bangla Desh.

It was not India talking to Pakistan at Shimla in ’72. It was Pakistan talking to Pakistan at Shimla in ’72. That is my reading! I haven’t gone through a worst draft than the one which was drafted at Shimla by the Hindu elite. Aggressor and Defender placed at the same level! It is like two ruffians reading an affidavit before a Magistrate-Class 1, promising to behave properly in future.

Was any soul searching ordered after it was found that Shimla Talks were perhaps sabotaged from within? Why lose the advantage of a military victory across a negotiating table? If some mindless persons thought that by intervening in the other nation affairs, in contravention of our foreign policy, they could prove the futility of two nation theory, then the idea had to be carried to a logical conclusion? But what we got after separating Siamese twins-at the most a nuisance, two independent enemies!

“Give me a cubic centimetre of your flesh and I could give you pain that would swallow you as the ocean swallows a grain of salt.” We know that the Muslims source the resources of sadism from their sweeping sway over the female population. But where from do the Hindus source it?

Timid persons worshipping mediocre careers, their hunger for pleasures of life make them to project the predator as a victim and the prey a nuisance. This trick makes them to source courage from mines of cruelty and they become passionless spectators. Post-independence, it became a massive culture, a limitless desire- the madness of which enhanced the appetite of the killers in Pakistan. As early as March 1950, a socialist leader Mushtaq Ahmed had warned the GoI not to appease Pakistan. “Knowing the Muslim League leadership and their approach to the problems, their cunning and false propaganda, I would not hesitate to warn the GOI that appeasement of Pakistan will not only endanger the principle of secular democracy but also lead to chaos, anarchy and barbarism unknown to history.”

 He in fact wrote history before it actually happened!

It has become almost a religious ritual for the Hindu Right Wing to visit the grave yards of history to claim scholarship as also leadership of the wingless majority. Demolition of temples is the favourite subject but the damage that the Mughals did to education does not cross their minds. The Mughals destroyed temples partly for denying the locals a meeting place thereby negating the chances of insurrection. They destroyed the education system by killing teachers and learned men. So they kept us illiterate and thus kept the Hindus away from the state affairs.

But when the British taught some of our immediate ancestors,  A for Apple, B for Boy,….they became self- conscience. Next came the freedom struggle. The paradox however is that the literate Hindus have every grievance against the British but none against the Mughals! Sadism!

End of Chapter 11